I spent last week on the road with the kiddos. Nathan had work and a research paper to work on, so he stayed here. I started off the trip a little skeptical of how it would all go. Luckily, I have great friends that hosted us on the way down one night. It was a great releif to see our good friends again and it made for a great break on the road for some pretty awful weather we were having on Monday.
I have to say that, for being without "Daddy" for a week away from home, we had a wonderful week! I was able to attend a surprise birthday luncheon for a very dear friend. We were able to participate in my neice's 8th birthday party. We had some GREAT down time with my inlaws; I nearly gave my FIL a HEART ATTACK, because he saw a business card on my dash from a pregnancy support service that I have been raising money for. Hahahahaha!! After I explained, we had a good laugh about it. We went on a great girls-only shopping day with my MIL, while my little Cooper got some priceless Papa-time with his Grandfather. Sunday we left and I decided to drive straight home instead of stopping for a night at our firends' home. I missed getting to see her again, but little Annagail was running a fever and Ella was showing some symptoms as well. I just figured that if we were going to be sick, I wanted to have them all sick at home.
The ride home was beautiful and felt as if the Lord was sitting right there in the car with us. There was no crying, no fighting, just a peaceful and beautiful drive home. Witht he ages of my crew, a trip to the Starbucks down the street can errupt in an all out warzone, so that is one of the reasons I know that are trip was blessed. The other reason is that I got home (from GA to NC!!!) on 3/4 of a tank of gas. I don't know how else THAT could have happened than with the Lord's hand on it.
I think that the trick of my trip was that I didn't over schedule. I had a couple of set events before going down, but everything else was just ideas of things that I would like to do. I didn't "pencil in" every minute, like I am usually guilty of. We ended up getting a lot of things done and getting to do a lot, but we just did them as they happened and I didn't STRESS and get CrAzY trying to shove a million things into our week.
My advice: Next time you plan a vacation or trip. Pick the destination, find two or three things to schedule for the family, and then just let the rest happen. If I can come back from a week of being a single parent to five children (under 8) and still feel relaxed then it has GOT to work, right?